Taking a direct page from Andrew Warhola and bringing back the famous ‘blotted line’ that made him famous on Madison Avenue in the mid nineteen fifties.
And to add to that it didn’t hurt to take a trip to Serendipity III this summer to experience what he probably did a hundred times.
I loved the place so much that it inspired me to create these paintings specifically for Mr. Stephen Bruce’s approval the next time I visit which will be around or close to my birthday this September.
I was playing around with the idea of Automatism and the proverbial “Happy accident” which touches on what the Dada movement was based upon originally until artists like Salvador Dali reinterpreted it for his own gain.
So the spray can of paint has to be near empty to achieve the effect I stumbled across while figuring these works of art out?
Almost perfect timing with the “World Aids Day” recognition December 1st. of every year.
I have had an interesting journey to get to where I sit and write today.
There are snippets of the story along with detailed accounts of everything thats missing in this fantastic article written by Susan Van Dongen who came by the studio last May for the Interview.
I am pleased to announce that my work is now represented by Gallery353 a new contemporary art gallery in Princeton New Jersey. All I can say at this point in my career is that “It’s a long road and, there’s no turning back.”
People have already asked me ‘how’ did this happen and my answer is: I just made a phone call once I read an article about the gallery owner Mr.Patrick Ryan who’s family once owned a dairy farm in Ewing Township,New Jersey where I grew up a very long time ago. I made an appointment and showed him my latest artwork and he was very excited to see these paintings.
But more important than the artwork he understood where I was coming from literally and artistically once he heard my story about being one of the missing ‘links’ to the 1980’s Downtown art scene. It also didn’t hurt to have two photographs of the lost photo shoot I did with photographer Tseng Kwon Chi & Keith Haring I was looking for for about thirty years!
What I’m really amazed about is that the gallery couldn’t be in a more Ideal place for me in terms of location to my studio which is about .75 miles down the street. This makes transporting work from one place to another a snap with the proper assistance helping me. I couldn’t have planned this situation for myself if I were my own genie from an imaginary bottle!!
I’ll start off this blog entry by saying trust your instincts and better yet; accept every invitation when humanly possible! You never know who you might meet or just who may be watching you from afar.
This past Thursday April 4th 2013 Kenny (Jet) Scharf opened his solo exhibition with a colorful explosion of paintings & large sculptures that gave you that spacey organic atmosphere feeling that only he can provide and is his signature environment. The paint was bubbling off the canvas with oozing shapes and splashes along with soft balloon like forms with eyes just inviting you into this world of cosmic [Kolor] as the title of the exhibition suggested.
The sculptures there were large in scale. One had this Ooh No type of expression with mouth wide open. Another one had more of a monster grimace with teeth and sinister eyes ready to just attack you if you didn’t behave. The third one was a totem of a mixture of expressions that towered over everybody in attendance which leads me to try to describe the crowd that showed up for the art show.
I had received a personal message via Facebook ( I personally call it Fessbook) from my new Gal Pal Drena DeNiro and that was the prime motivator for me because I was in great anticipation to finally meet her in person because we share some personal connections to the early 1980’s New York art scene and have been messaging each other about that since I sent her a friends request that she surprisingly accepted some time ago.
A lot of these people were in attendance on this night so it made things kinda personal and a warmer experience than the usual fashion show-N-tell that most openings can turn out to be. But, don’t get me wrong, that can be fun too if you’re a voyeur like myself and get excited in large crowds.
I met the one and only Fab 5 Freddy, Mark Kostabi, and ran into Rick Prol again after meeting him at the last exhibition I attended in New York; I also met Allison Goldenstein a friend of Drena’s who is connected to the fashion business and designs clothing from what I know of her personally. I saw Kenny’s beautiful youngest daughter Malia who I keep mistaking for another young beauty named Andrea Diaz who stayed in our Orbit most of the evening so she appears in a lot of shots Tasha K. captured of the audience.
The only thing about these art openings that has changed a lot since I use to attend them back in the early 80’s is that people view it as a night out on the town; a sort of entertainment and a way to escape paying for drinks. So you heard the term freeloader [even though the gallery was dry] being whispered amongst the in-crowd who back in the day brought our own party material with us and shared with whoever was in need of a quick pick me up and you made new friends that way.You could tell who was just there looking for beer or wine to drink. I have or I should say my #1 Gal Pal Tasha K. captured some awesome shots of the evening which I’m happy to share here. Check them out!
Last February I reported on the art exhibition “The Silver Show” comemmorating the death of the most under recognized but highly popularized artist of the twenty first century Andy Warhol.
For more on the celebration hosted by Da Vinci Art Alliance you can read my post titled “Fifteen minutes twenty five years later” after you view the Interview conducted by MINDtv http://www.mindtv.org featuring Dr. Debra Miller,David Foss and myself talking about not only Warhol but Da Vinci Art Alliance’s importance as being a non profit gallery that always has an educational element to it’s exhibition programing and how the members support each other by actually purchasing art.
The three of us were interviewed by MINDTv about the gallery and it’s connection to the contemporary master which was posted on YouTube and we have the link here MindTv’s Interview.
On February 4th 2012 Da Vinci Art Alliance celebrated the home coming of America’s most famous post modern artist; Andy Warhol who changed the way we look at the common objects around us with a more discerning eye. The photograph above shows Dr. Debra Miller and James Warhola (Andy’s nephew) participating in an symposium held at the Fleischer Art Memorial school which is across the street from where the exhibition “Warholized” The Silver Show @ Da vinci Art Alliance on 704 Catharine St. in Philadelphia, PA is on view until February 26th.
I was a guest speaker at this event which was a pleasant surprise to me and I was happy to explain my connection with Pop Art and the personal association I have with the family (Andy Warhol’s) which I have adopted as my artistic extension.
What became evident to me was the fact that I truly have arrived at some career junction that has materialize itself in a real concrete way and, I couldn’t be happier that I truly stuck to my guns, so that my natural instincts usually,more times than not, guided me to a rather unorthodox method of career building, but I’ve managed to overcome many obstacles that would have stopped the average person in their tracks it has been said to me on several occasions so this is not my own personal opinion;how would I know that theoretically?
In this exhibition I have two prints that were created by my new photographic technique and using the computer. Making my toy sculptures the subject of my artwork and placing them into real situations that I photograph at another time. The greatest thing about making art this way is that,”the final artwork doesn’t exist until you pay for it in advance so you don’t have to worry about restocking your inventory It’s made to order like ordering a cheese burger from Burger King or Mc Donald’s it doesn’t get any better than that,people want instant gratification and gifts through the mail.”
Its true, African Americans have long admired Asian culture and its traditions along with its post war contemporary restructuring. The introduction of martial arts in the 1970’s to western society sparked the interest of African Americans across the nation and Karate was practiced (although secretly) in the basements of homes and public housing developments everywhere. This form of self-defense was felt needed due to the discrimination that African American males experienced while being outside at night and questioned by police at random.
The second influence came from television broadcasts of films such as “Godzilla vs King Kong” and with episodic television series portraying families that transformed into super robotic heroes like “Jonny Socko” and “Giant Robot” along with “Ultraman” and the Science Patrol exploration team ultimatly expressed transcendence and adventure.
The third influence was Saturday morning cartoons which had the most impact on the youth (myself being one of them) which used martial arts fighting in a lot of popular shows namely “Hong Kong Phooey” utilizing Scatman Crothers an African American actors voice as the main character.
These programs were all transformative and inspirational to the African American community in many ways and now Asian youth culture is finding relativity in the Hip Hop culture of African Americans because of similar experiences with living in a traditional oppressive society. I personally feel a deep spiritual connection with Asian culture because of its form of discipline it has and its respect of form and function in its traditional sense but that is rapidly transforming into a new hybrid of modern society expressed through music and the visual arts.
A: I started professionally exhibiting my work twenty one years ago.
2. What inspired your work?
A: I met the late Keith Haring in 1987 in New York, but before that I always knew I wanted to be an artist or designer since I was fourteen years old.
3. Did you ever feel like giving up?
A: Sure, I told a friend of mine when I had created twenty five paintings a long time ago that if I didn’t become famous after that I would stop. I have over 200 or so works of art now.
4. Any upcoming exhibitions?
A: Not really, I’m waiting to here from Toy2r to be included in their Qee World Tour with one of my designs I usually have an annual solo show around September in Philadelphia at Smile Gallery nothing confirmed.
5. What is the best thing about being an artist?
A: I guess it would be being able to think about something and make it a reality so others can see what is on your mind it is the best way to communicate for me.
6. What would you call your style?
A: “Afro Pop” or “Pop Noir” because I’m African American but it’s really Race less art, I like to hide my ethnicity so you cannot tell who made the art..
Greetings,This post is to inform you of this spectacular exhibition focusing on the world of designer custom toys and the art that is produced on three dimentional figures that are sold in do it yourself kits(DIY) that retail at a store in Soho, NY among other retailers across the country.
It is a new medium for an artist like myself to be a part of and, I envite you to see this very promising exhibition that will include some 3D works but not limited to just that medium alone.
There may be a total of one hundred artist with very diverse backgrounds everything from graphic illustration to, graffitti to, fine art and sculpture and also, some strange model makers or toy designers is what I should say.For more information contact Focal Point Gallery director Ron Turner about the exhibition and mark your calendar for this ground breaking exhibition.
This movement of artist who create these works of art, and,who will be on display at this exhibition that I just recently got involved with reminds me of that ground breaking show “The Times Square Show” in 1980 that launched the careers of the most collectable artist of this century. I was a nap too late to be a part of that exhibition back then but when I found out about this exhibition, I knew couldn’t let this one go by without me putting some work in it.
I truly hope you can attend and see this great new scene that is sweeping the nation. These artist that are making this “Low Jack Pop” are creating positive things with the earths mortal enemy, “Plastic.
RedSaid a.k.a KaMo
Pop Art at Princeton: Permanent and Promised
March 24 August 12, 2007
This exhibition celebrates the promised gift of an important collection of sculptures, paintings, drawings, and prints, featuring later works by leading figures of the American Pop Art movement: Robert Indiana, Alex Katz, Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg and Coosje Van Bruggen, Andy Warhol, Tom Wesselmann, and others. Also included are works from the museums distinguished permanent collection, provided a broad historical overview of Pop art, particularly as it has been practiced the artists represented in this gift, not only in the 1960s, but throughout their careers. The exhibition has been organized to coincide with the publication of Pop Art: Contemporary Perspectives, the first in a new series of Princeton University Art Museum Monographs, in depth explorations of the museums rich collections. The authors, all of whom have recently received their Ph.D. or are current doctoral candidates in the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University, are well positioned to deliver new perspectives on Pop, since they belong to a generation that looks back on both the period and its later revision by early scholars.
“I was lucky to have some connections that I could rely on to get my hands on an invitation to the opening night of this great exhibition which was last saturday evening. It turns out that I didn’t really need one but, its always good to have your act together.I wasn’t going to let anything ruen the oppertunity to introduce myself to the elite patrons and historians of the Princeton Art Museum and to see some of the art that I have never seen by some of the great pop artist of our time.
I thought that I would be a unique guest and stand out from the croud but, I had no Idea that I would be the only African American male at this opening who wasn’t working security.It took all of one glass of wine to get use to the fact that I was probably in the greatest position of my career and that I needed to at one point introduce myself to someone and strike up a conversation.
The exhibition was awesome in the fact that it contained art that I had never seen in reproductive publications about each artist represented in the show.I did see some of the Claes Oldenburg and Coosje Van Bruggen sculptural studies of the blueberry pie al a mode at the Paula Cooper gallery last year but, there was an interesting collaberation piece done by Andy warhol with Gerard Malanga that was rare.I saw a lot of Tom Wesselmann’s that I had not seen before and the Robert Indiana little number sculptures were something I would have loved to own, I just could imagine having them placed sparsly around a living room lounge or out on a patio under glass.
There were some very nice people whom I enjoyed talking with, and I felt right at home being in their company.I must return to the show before it leaves and take another look at the Rauschenberg’s that they have on display, I didn’t have enough time to check them out. RedSaid